Office humor can boost spirits and improve your relationships with colleagues, but there are some pitfalls to avoid. Here are five tips to safely flex your funny bone at work:
Go with your gut. Each of your colleagues likely has a different idea of what’s funny, which can create a dangerous gray area between amusing and offensive. If you think to yourself, “Hmm, I wonder if I should say this?” that’s a clue you shouldn’t.
Don’t use humor to criticize. Using office humor as a vehicle to mock, vent or make a coworker look bad is no laughing matter. If you want to address a frustrating situation or offer a critique of a colleague’s work, be straightforward instead of sarcastic or passive-aggressive.
Poke fun at yourself. The safest target for a witty barb is you. Being able to laugh at your own quirks shows that you’re self-aware and don’t take yourself too seriously.
Watch what you write. Conveying your sense of humor with the written word isn’t always easy because recipients of your messages can’t see your face or hear the tone of your voice. Proceed with caution to avoid having your note fall flat or be misinterpreted
Don’t force office humor. If cracking one-liners doesn’t come naturally, use other ways to show your lighter side. Simply smiling and laughing along with jokes can demonstrate you have a good sense of humor.
For additional tips, visit the TCG Blog.
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